Our dear friends celebrated their 50th anniversary last night, with a party organized by their three adult children (and spouses). It was a lovely tribute, acknowledging the admirable legacy this married couple has modeled for their children and grandchildren.
In my post Striking Gold from last year, I posted about my Beloved and I having achieved our own 50th anniversary. Our celebration (mostly by preference) was more subdued than previous milestones. So much goes on over the Holidays, having an anniversary rarely receives precedence when more urgent events intrude. Consider, last year I was eight days late with my post!
Many of our friends have achieved their 50th anniversaries. Others are just a few years away. Several years ago, I came across a quote that encapsulated my thoughts about the golden milestone. The statement comes at the very end of an article by World Magazine editor Marvin Olasky.
Though having reached a “summit,” it would be foolish to claim we know all there is to know about marriage … because we don’t. We’re still on the path, still learning, but it’s always nice to look back at where we were and how far we’ve come, my Beloved and I.
In The Beginning
We often reminisce. When we were both college students in the late 60s, we participated singly in club-sponsored social activities. One night, we found ourselves at the same function playing a silly game called Pass the Grapefruit. Here’s an 8-second video from YouTube of how the game is played.
That night was not our first date, but we’ve always laughed about that game. Our first date happened later that semester when we went to a theater showing of Romeo and Juliet. The 1968 film retells Shakespeare’s classic tragedy. One of the film’s final scenes depicts the star-crossed lovers as they choose to die rather than live without each other.
As we were sitting in the theater (remember, on our first date) with everyone around us experiencing the dreadful emotions as Romeo and Juliet expire, the scene evoked a completely different response for my Beloved and myself. The screen capture (below) is dark, but to us, it appeared as though Romeo and Juliet were playing the grapefruit game! We couldn’t stop laughing!
Even today, we find it amusing … and in the sonnet below, the first-date-story offers a clue to our shared but cockeyed sense of humor.
Celebrating a Summit
Last year, I began composing a sonnet I intended to finish before December 20th, in recognition of our then-50th year of marriage. Though the poem wasn’t completed in 2019, the sentiments (not surprisingly) have deepened over the ensuing year. Herewith, my Anniversary Sonnet … now through 51 years.